Meet the DIRECTOR, Cellin Gluck (click here for profile) -- Join us after the film for a discussion with the film's director, Cellin Gluck on March 20th at the Ronald Reagan Building.
Persona Non Grata tells the story of Chiune Sugihara, the courageous Japan diplomat who defied his government and issued visas in 1940 to over 6,000 Jews, saving them from certain death in Nazi concentration camps. For his actions, he was dismissed from the Foreign Ministry after the war and lived in obscurity.
Sugihara is sometimes called “Japan’s Schindler,” but in reality his motives were very different. He issued visas to people he did not know because he believed it was the right thing to do. What led him to oppose his own Government? The film shows the gradual transformation in Sugihara’s thinking, from a “gung ho” supporter and intelligence gatherer for Japan’s war effort in Manchuria in the 1930s through his subsequent postings and encounters with the Jewish community in Europe. The film also tells a second and rarely-told story, which is what happened after the refugees made the perilous journey across Russia and initially were denied boarding for Japan. It took additional acts of political courage on the part of the Japanese Consul in Vladivostok and an official of the Japan Travel Bureau (today’s JTB) to grant the refugees safe passage to Japan.
Persona Non Grata was filmed entirely in Poland with some of Japan’s and Poland’s leading actors and actresses.
Articles and Reviews
“Is there a place for the brave individual in Japan, committing a selfless act against injustice and intolerance in the face of certain dismissal or worse? That question is at the heart of Persona Non Grata, a must-see film for all those who ever wondered what gave Chiune Sugihara the courage to defy orders, or who need reminding that we all, each of us, can do the right thing.” The Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan http://www.fccj.or.jp/events-calendar/film-screenings/movie-committee-blog/item/718-chiune.html
Director Cellin Gluck's Profile
Cellin Gluck監督 プロフィール
Grew up in Wakayama Prefecture, Japan, and began his film career with Ridley Scott’s “Black Rain” (1989.) While he specializes in producing/directing US-Japan co-productions, he continues to work as an assistant director on Hollywood productions, such as Michael Bay’s “Transformers” (2007,) Boaz Yakin’s “Remember the Titans” (2000) and Robert Zemeckis’ “Contact” (1997,) and production manager on films like “Memoirs of a Geisha” (2005) and “Godzilla” (2014). He also directed US segments for Shinji Higuchi’s “Lorelei” (2005), Hideyuki Hirayama’s “Oba: The Last Samurai” (2011), and the “20th Century Boys” trilogy (2008-2009) by Yukihiko Tsutsumi. In 2009, he made his debut as a film director with “Sideways” (2009,) and “Persona Non Grata” is his second feature film.